LG's service robot makes commercial debut at Seoul hospital

By Lim Chang-won Posted : July 8, 2020, 11:17 Updated : July 8, 2020, 11:17

[Courtesy of LG Electronics]

SEOUL -- A self-driving service robot developed by LG Electronics made its commercial debut this week at a state-run hospital in Seoul to deliver various items such as blood samples, prescription drugs, diagnostic reagents and consumables. This is the first time that a home-made commercial service robot has been introduced to a hospital.

LG has developed various service robots such as CLOi, an AI-based service robot which provides navigational services and controls connected appliances. LG's foodservice robot has been put into test operation at a restaurant in Seoul. Equipped with self-driving technology, it can bring food to customers and carry empty dishes back to the kitchen.

LG said in a statement that its service robot called "CLOi ServeBot" has two types, including one deployed at Seoul National University Hospital on July 7.

The size of CLOi ServeBot is 50 centimeters wide, 50 centimeters long and 130 centimeters high. Up to 15 kilograms can be loaded into three compartments. Its security system prevents theft or loss during delivery. Managers can remotely monitor the status of the robot and manage the history of use and delivery schedules.

Robots for restaurants can store up to 20 kilograms of food. LG will operate service robots sequentially this month at various stores.

Based on self-driving technology, LG's service robot can set a number of destinations and deliver goods sequentially. It is equipped with a touch display, making it easy to set a destination. The display shows blinking eyes or smiling to express various emotions and intimate feeling.

LG said that service robots would play a bigger role in minimizing human contact when non-face-to-face services are needed due to a new coronavirus pandemic. "We hope that at a time when non-face-to-face services are expanding, LG's CLOi robots will be actively introduced in various places such as hospitals, hotels, restaurants and offices to create new customer values," said LG's robotics business head Roh Jin-seo. 

In February, LG forged a strategic partnership with Woowa Brothers, the operator of South Korea's top food delivery service app Baedal Minjok, to develop a total smart solution for delivery and other robots by combining LG's artificial intelligence and indoor self-driving technology with Woowa's know-how in operating service platforms.

​ In June, a consortium of LG and Woowa was selected by the Korea Institute for Robot Industry Advancement (KIRIA) to join a program aimed at revitalizing the domestic service robot market. The two companies would develop a serving robot solution and use it for Woowa's robot rental business.
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